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Full text of "Mathura A District Memoir"

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27S                                         THE GVAilAB TEMPLES.
two              The explanation is obvious.   In earlier days, when large blocks
of stone were difficult to procure,, there was also kek of sufficient arc to con-
ceal the onaFoidable join in the structure. In course of time the eye became
accustomed to the defect^ aad eventually required its apparent introduction
even where it did not really exist A similar conservatism may be traced
in the art Mstory of every nation, and more especially in religions art* In
breaking up Ms columns into two pieces^ and thus perpettiatingj as a decora-
iioQj what in its origin had been a signal defectj the Hindu architect was
unconsciously ittlueneed by the same motive as the Greek? who to the very
last continued to introduce^ as prominent features in his temple facades,, the
metopes aad fcriglyphs which had "been necessities in the days of woodea con-
struction, bat had become unmeaning when repeated in stone.
The two ancient Brahmanicai temples on the Gwaliar rock, commonly
known as the Sas Bahn, illustrate still more remarkably tlmis the Noh-jhil dar-
gali the way in which what was ongmally a eonstmetnrsl make-shift has subse-
quently beea adopted as a permanent arehitectural feature. In the larger of
these two buildings the interior of the spacious nave is disfigured by four enor-
mous colamaSj which occupy a square in the centre of the area and obstruct the
view in every direction. It is evident at a glance that, though the work of the
tome architect as the rest of the fabric, they are. utterly out of harmony with
Ms first design. Necessity alone can have compelled him to introduce them as
props for a falling roof; while the sliallowness and unfinished state of their sur-
face sculpture farther suggest that they were erected in great haste in order to
avert a catastrophe which appeared imminent. They were as little contemplated
at the outset as the inverted arches in Wells Cathedral, or as the rude struts in-
serted by General Cunningham in this very same building to support the broken
architraves of the upper story. In the smaller temple^ which is of somewhat
later, date, the internal arrangement follows precisely the same lines, though
acre die lesser span of the roof rendered the detached pillars unnecessary,, the
massive walls being quite sufficient by themselves to support the small Hat
doiae anl :lw low tower that snnnonnte! it. The central columns, however,
are h*1*** *.; vtiarically treated^ and are in saeh excellent proportion to the other
parts of t'i'j uuiUmg, having been designed with them and not subsequently
intrad^L . ;v -A tuey are really decorative smd add beauty to the interior.
Bo I'll : -si :emples, like that of 'GoMnd Deva at Brinda-ban, to which they
a :r;, :t  livable and interesting complement, originally consisted of three
r r^i v.,' ? -u fact which has not been previously noticed by any archaeologist.